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Rivets and rivet guns

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Horsee1

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Hello all,

Apologies if this has been covered extensively elsewhere, I can't find it.

I want to install some dead locks on my van, Once 'chopped in' I believe they'll need riveting to fix them in place.
I've no real experience of riveting. I see I can buy a cheapish riveter quite easily, I was wondering if these put the same kind of rivets in, as an expensive rivet gun; like I assume they'd use if I got a garage to do it.

Do rivets come in different lengths/ gauges? I guess it's just a case of drilling a clearance hole and the rivet heads do the work of holding everything in place.

If its stronger to use a big powerful gun I was thinking I'd get everything fitted but loose and then drive to a garage or metal working outfit and get them to rivet everything in place.

I'm loathed to spend extra hundreds of pounds on having someone else come out and fit the locks just a bit quicker than I feel I should be able to do myself.

Any words/advice on riveting or fitting deadlocks to van doors appreciated.

Thanks in advance and all the best.
 

Horsee1

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I've found the answers to some of my questions regarding different sizes of rivets on Youtube but would still appreciate any general advice and whether there's any advantage, other than speed of using a powered rivet gun.
 

Brandlin

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Horsee1":24qz3pdz said:
I've found the answers to some of my questions regarding different sizes of rivets on Youtube but would still appreciate any general advice and whether there's any advantage, other than speed of using a powered rivet gun.
Your hand gets less tired ?

A powered gun just allows you to do more without the strain.

Only possible downside is that for large bore rivets of a heavy material (say stainless steel you might find you struggle to close the jaws with the short handles. But the manual guns work like a ratchet, close a little, release, close a little more...
 

sunnybob

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Rivets look pretty when done but dont have much strength when a crowbar is trying to lever them off the van (thats not what they were made for)

Use coach bolts, with washers as large as you can fit on the inside. Then they will have to use a disc cutter, which is not only more incriminating to be found with, but much more noisy, which will hopefully deter them.
 

MikeG.

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Buy yourself an ordinary rivet tool and a box of assorted rivets. You'll soon see what they're capable of, how easy they are, and how a cheap manual riveter is all you need if you aren't using them all day every day.
 

Horsee1

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Thanks everyone!

sunnybob":1gsbso7c said:
Rivets look pretty when done but dont have much strength when a crowbar is trying to lever them off the van (thats not what they were made for)
I'm thinking of the mortice style deadlocks, not the externally mounted, armoured pad lock in a housing kind. Thanks for taking the time to reply though. From what I've seen I think the sprouts end up bending the whole door back rather than pulling the lock from of it's fixings.

MikeG.":1gsbso7c said:
Buy yourself an ordinary rivet tool and a box of assorted rivets. You'll soon see what they're capable of, how easy they are, and how a cheap manual riveter is all you need if you aren't using them all day every day.
This sounds like good advice.

AES":1gsbso7c said:
You may find some of the stuff in this thread helpful Horse1:

rivet-nozzles-t120220.html
-I'll check it out, thanks!
 

TFrench

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You're right to use rivets in this application - we've had deadlocks fitted to all our vans and they're riveted. (Last one we bought we got the Ford dealer to fit them before we even took it off the forecourt - they're so insecure its not worth the risk) The mechanism is inside the door so you have to have the door open to drill the rivets out. Perfectly secure. Put a little paint on the edges of the drilled hole before you rivet the plates on, or you'll get rust. My vans been broken into 3 times now on my drive - first time I didn't realise for a week till I needed my impact driver, second time I lost all my battery kit, 3rd time we'd had the deadlocks fitted and they got nothing. Worth every penny.
Regarding hand riveters, the cheap ones work, the best are old school tucker TT55's (with the square handle, not round) I hoover them up on ebay whenever I see them cheap as we go through so many at work and the new ones just don't last at all. Battery riveters are great for larger rivets or if you have a lot to do - I love my gesipa one. If I had other milwaukee kit I'd be very tempted by that one.
 

julianf

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I've had a hand rivet thing for decades. Admittedly nothing fancy, but I've always hated it.

I had a job where I wanted the rivets to all be square, look cosmetically good, etc. so I bought an air powered one. I think it was about £20 delivered? Wasn't a lot.

Night and day difference. You pull the trigger and the job is done. No effort to use, so your rivets always go in square and flush, with none of that rocking about, damaging the paintwork, etc. that you get when you're retensioning a manual device.

I'm sure someone will claim to have done millions with nothing but their teeth (etc) but, like I say, cheap air riveter, pull the trigger, job done. No need to have special dentures made or anything.
 

novocaine

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I guess it will be a 1 time operation of about 6 rivets.
a 5 quid rolson pliers type of gun will do just fine for that. they even come with a pack of rivets. not that they'll be much cop, but it's something.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Rolson-44409 ... Sw~flcD5pL

if you plan on installing a few hundred rivets, spend the money, otherwise it's a tool that gets used so infrequently in most workshops that a bit of bluster every blue moon is worth the cost saving.

rivet sizing is covered in the thread above, basically measure the hole diameter, measure the 2 plates you want to rivet together and add a few mm. they come in different shank sizes (depending on the size of rivet body) and different head sizes too, for what you are doing I'd have though it would be 4.8x12 (requires a 5mm hole) which will give you a max grip thickness of 8mm. (if you read the other thread you'll see that this is perfect grip, you can push that out if it's not structural but for a lock I'd want to stay in that range)
 

MattyT

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Hey. I'm sorry for the newbie question, but I'm wanting to get a rivet gun and I'm not sure which of the small rivet guns are best.
Does anyone know what to look out for when buying a rivet gun please? I would ideally like a lightweight one that is as versatile as possible.

Thank you!
 

TFrench

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I saw these come up in one of my saved searches today. Proper square handled tucker TT55s, with the different nozzles. I've got lots stocked up or I'd buy them myself at that price.
Ebay item number 223852740532
 

MattyT

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I'm wanting to get one for a fast installation that doesn't need to be pumped twice. Do you know how I can tell if one squeeze of the handle will install a plastic rivet? Some of the installation videos look like they take two or three squeezes of the handles to install them. Ideally I want a pair that are lightweight and don't need air to operate.
 

Hlsmith

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If you don't want air operated you need a scissor mechanism one
Much quicker and easier to use but require quite a bit of space
 

TFrench

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Why do you need them to pull in one? If the materials you are joining are thicker, you have less rivet to deform and they snap quicker. The more rivet you have sticking out the other side, the more pulling you have to do. Like I said before, Tucker TT55's are the best. The jaws wear out faster on new ones but then I'm pulling thousands of stainless rivets a year. If you're just doing a few here and there they'll last you a lifetime.
 

Trevanion

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I've done millions of rivets with nothing but my teeth, I don't understand why you all need these fancy "rivet guns"...

Pfft.
 

MattyT

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Thank you, I've managed to borrow a small hand riveter tool. It is really quick and easy for punching plastic rivets into panels. I'm going to get the Tucker TT55 for stainless steel pop rivets. It looks like they are suitable for 2.4mm, 3.2mm and 4.0mm rivets?
 

TFrench

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Yes, although you wouldn't want to do many big ones with them. You'll have seems like Popeye. 3.2mm or 1/8" are fine though. If you do get some of the old style square handle ones, the only design flaw is that the back of the handles are too close together and can give you a nasty pinch!

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